Steven Wright

Wednesday's Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Steven Wright vs. Luis Severino

August 05, 2015 - 4:20 am

Game two of the Red Sox' three-game set with the Yankees will get underway Wednesday when Luis Severino makes his major league debut for the Bronx Bombers against Steven Wright. Wright will make his third consecutive start after filling the rotation following Clay Buchholz's injury and Justin Masterson's ineffectiveness. Since rejoining the staff on July 20, Wright has made three starts, going 1-2 with a 5.51 ERA. He has given up four home runs upon his return, leading to a .485 opponents' slugging percentage. In his latest outing against the White Sox last Thursday, however, Wright had it all working. The righty turned in a seven-inning, 116-pitch performance in which he gave up just two runs and struck out eight batters. Instead of turning to his signature knuckleball, Wright made a point of mixing his pitches, especially his fastball, as he dominated the red-hot White Sox offense. "It's one of those things I don't go out there thinking I am going to throw fastballs tonight," Wright said. "The scouting report that I've seen on those guys -- they are pretty patient early on and I wasn't throwing a lot of strikes at the beginning so I thought it was a good opportunity to do some fastballs so I tried to get ahead in the count, and then later on in the game me and Blake [Swihart] were able to mix it in in good situations to really keep them off the knuckleball. I just go out there and feel it out. Sometimes I throw more than other times. Today I mixed it in a little bit more in the past." For the season, Wright owns a 4-4 record and a 4.53 ERA. Despite his bloated ERA, he has been one of the Red Sox' most consistent pitchers across the board throughout 2015. He's made just one start in which he's given up more than three earned runs, a distinction not shared by his rotation mates. Wright has made one appearance against the Yankees this season, April 10 as a long reliever during the 19-inning thriller. He earned the win in the dogfight after tossing five innings of two-run ball in relief. The Red Sox will be hoping he can maintain his current form and extend his success vs. the Bombers on Wednesday. Wednesday will mark an important day in the Yankees' 2015 season as they send top prospect Luis Severino to mound for his first career start. Severino has torn up the minors in 2015, posting a combined 9-2 record and a 2.45 ERA as a 21-year-old between Double-A and Triple-A. Most impressively, he has gone 7-0 with a 1.91 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre since getting called up there on May 31. In his minor league career, Severino has gone 23-11 with a 2.30 ERA and a .212 opponents' bating average. A stark contrast from Wright, Severino is a flamethrower. His fastball can ride up in the high 90s and sits comfortably in 93-95 mph range with solid command of both sides of the plate. His next best pitch is an 85 mph changeup, which draws lots of swings and misses next to his fastball. Severino's lone breaking pitch is a slider, which has been inconsistent to this point, according to scouts. Hopes are sky-high in New York that Severino will play the role of savior for a below-average Yankee rotation. His manager, Joe Girardi, is confident the youngster will have the mental strength to perform at the highest level. "There are no guarantees, but I saw his personality in spring training and the way he handled himself and he wasn't overwhelmed," Girardi said of Severino after announcing his call-up Sunday. "Sometimes with pitchers it takes a year, and that wasn't the case with him. That makes me think he will be able to handle it." The Yankees will look to extend their 5 1/2-game lead over the Blue Jays and Orioles in the AL East with a win Wednesday. Red Sox vs. Severino (RHP) No Red Sox have faced Severino. Yankees vs. Wright (RHP) Dustin Ackley (5 plate appearances): .000 AVG/.000 OBP/.000 SLG Chris Young (5): .333/.600/.333, 2 walks Brendan Ryan (4): .000/.250/.000 Jacoby Ellsbury (3): .333/.333/.333 Brett Gardner (3): .000/.667/.000 Didi Gregorius (3): .000/.000/.000 Carlos Beltran is 1-for-2 with a double. Stephen Drew is 1-for-2. Chase Headley is 0-for-1. Brian McCann is 1-for-2 with a double. John Ryan Murphy is 0-for-2. Mark Teixeria is 1-for-2 with a solo home run. Alex Rodriguez has not faced Wright.